I could still remember that on hot lazy afternoons when I felt like snacking, I
would raid my mother's peanut butter jar. I would scoop a heaping spoonful of
the smooth peanut butter and lick it like ice cream. I would repeat the ritual
until it would almost ruin my appetite for dinner.
Then, as I got older, I
realised how much fat peanuts contained and had sworn that I would never indulge
in that habit ever again.
Well, I have to eat my words now. Thanks to recent research, I found that
nuts can help to ward off diseases. One cannot eat excessive amount of nuts but
with care and awareness, I can now afford to go
back to my childhood habit once more, albeit this time, I restrict myself to
only a spoonful. At least, I kept telling myself, I am doing myself a favour by
not having that afternoon cookie or muffin!
Why do I go back to my pre-adolescent pleasure? Well, I found that the more
nuts we eat, particularly almonds, the lower our levels of low-density
lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol become.
However, what to watch out for would be the fact that nuts are actually high
in calories and fat. Imagine, 15 cashew nuts for instance, contain 180
So, snacking on nuts may then be a tricky business. Why? Do you honestly
think that one will impose self-discipline to stop at 15 delicious Cashew nuts?
Far from it! Chances are, one will tend to over-snack on nuts.
The key to healthy eating is moderation. Nuts can definitely be a part of a
healthy diet if one allows it.
One of the more ideal approaches will be to still enjoy nuts but instead of
adding the nuts to one's diet, consider replacing some of the food items in
one's daily meals, especially those that are high in saturated fats, with them.
For instance, instead of adding chocolate chips when making cookies, replace the
chips with nuts.
So, what do I do now when I have that urge to snack on those hot afternoons?
I will make sure that I will limit myself to just one precious spoonful. This
time around, as an adult, I do not get that overstuffed feeling after spoonfuls
of peanut butter. In fact, I enjoy that satisfying fuzzy feeling one gets when
one indulges in one's favourite snack; yet, I still feel that I am in control
over what I eat. If I still do get a little peckish, I would go for fruits and
perhaps a cashew nut or two!